Former LSU and NFL running back Cecil “The Diesel” Collins did not win an early end to his court-ordered probation Monday, but he got the next best thing: He’ll no longer be supervised.
Collins’ probation is set to expire in 18 months.
His legal troubles date back to 1998 in Baton Rouge when he was accused of forcing his way into the Nicholson Drive apartments of two women and fondling them.
After pleading guilty to felony counts of unauthorized entry of an inhabited dwelling and misdemeanor simple battery counts, state District Judge Mike Caldwell gave Collins a suspended five-year prison term and put him on probation for four years in 1999.
But that same year, while on probation, he sneaked into his neighbors’ apartment in Miami and was found guilty of burglary.
Collins spent more than 13 years in a Florida prison and was released in 2013.
He was then brought back to Baton Rouge, where Caldwell found him in violation of his probation.
The judge early last year put Collins on probation for three more years, rejecting a call from the East Baton Rouge Parish District Attorney’s Office to send him back to prison.
On Monday, Collins’ attorney, Rodney Baum, asked Caldwell to terminate Collins’ probation 18 months early, arguing that Collins has been out of jail for two years, is employed and living in Florida, and is married with a new son.
“Mr. Collins has adjusted to life outside of prison,” Baum said to the judge.
Prosecutor Sonya Cardia-Porter reminded Caldwell of the District Attorney’s Office’s position on the matter.
In addition to holding down a job, the judge noted that Collins goes to school two nights a week and has had no new arrests or positive drug tests while on supervised probation.
Instead of ending Collins’ probation, Caldwell said he would reduce it to unsupervised probation. He is expected to review the matter again sometime next year.
Baum said after court he hopes the judge will terminate the probation at that time.
“He’s done everything he’s supposed to do,” Baum said, noting that unsupervised probation will make Collins’ life easier. He will no longer have to report to a probation officer.
Collins, 38, who did not attend Monday’s court hearing, ran for nearly 600 yards in his first four games at LSU before breaking his leg. He played for the Miami Dolphins in 1999 before running into legal trouble in Miami.